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`Politics first, law later' - CRC Chairman

Issue No: 212; 20 November 2000

Politics must come first and law later, says the Chairman of the interim regime's Constitution Commission, Asesela Ravuvu.

Ravuvu made the comment when asked by Fiji TV news tonight on why was the Constitution Commission still continuing when it was declared by Justice Gates that the Constitution Commission has no legal basis. Gates had stated in his judgment: "There is no constitutional foundation of legality for the interim government or for the Constitutional Review Committee".

Responding to the question, Ravuvu replied that always politics must come before law and legalities. He said that the legal experts must come after politics and make legislation.

Ravuvu is an academic at the University of the South Pacific. He was made the Professor of Pacific Studies after the 1987 military coups. In 1991 he published a book called The Façade of Democracy where he concluded that indigenous Fijians "must be assured of a degree of political paramountcy if all races are to live together peacefully".

END 20 November 2000

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